A massive rodent has been spotted fighting off magpies as the eager birds repeatedly swooped down on the rat. Footage of the feather-flying encounter was caught on camera by stunned resident Sharon Dring in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffs, on November 11.
Sharon, 65, had a ringside seat for the street battle that saw the rodent fight off the attentions of two corvid attackers.
The “brave” brown rat was filmed leaping through the air and bearing its teeth despite being outnumbered by the bigger magpies when they swooped.
The black and white birds can be seen flapping their wings and hopping backwards as they tried to surround and peck at their would-be prey.
Granmother-of-two Sharon said the rat stood its ground and put up a “fight for its life” as it lunged at both its enemies which took flight to avoid a nasty bite.
Incredibly, the rat eventually came out on top following the battle which lasted several minutes when the birds gave up and flew away.
Rats and magpies are known to target each other’s offspring as prey so may have challenged each other because they had young nearby.
Sharon said she was alerted to the tense stand-off by her husband outside her home on Friday afternoon. Married mum-of-two Sharon, a local government worker, said: “My husband had popped home form work on his lunch break and he said ‘come outside and see this’.
“I have never seen a rat and magpies fighting. I questioned whether I was seeing things. So I videoed it and another magpie joined in the fight.
“They were going at it for ages and not bothering about where they were. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing in the middle of a residential area.
“They were pecking at him and then the rat was turning around and lunging at both of them. The rat was determined to put up a fight for its life. If they kept pecking at it, they would have killed it but it was a very brave rat.
“They must have been fighting before my husband arrived back home for his lunch and were going at it for a fair few minutes.
“They stopped fighting when someone came out of their house. The magpies gave up and flew away and the rat ran off.
“It had a very lucky escape. It was outnumbered by bigger prey and came out on top.
“I actually felt quite sorry for the rat, I don’t like rats but being ganged up by two magpies is not what you want. And they were really pecking at him as if they were trying to kill him.
“I’m glad he got away. I’ve never seen this before, we don’t usually get rats around here, it was very unusual.”
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